GOP Convention: Lots of show: “Today, the 40th Republican National Convention assembles in hurricane-threatened Tampa, Fla. Seven days later, the 46th Democratic National Convention will assemble in presumably non-hurricane-threatened Charlotte, N.C. Thousands of delegates, many thousands more press personnel, and even more political enthusiasts will be on hand. . . People (and the federal government) will spend very large sums of money on all this. Many will ask why we still have national conventions at all,” writes AEI’s Michael Barone. (National Review)

Room for Debate asks: Do party conventions matter anymore? (New York Times)

Romney at the Republican National Convention: “This week, 48 years on, Mitt Romney is set to achieve what his father never could. But his great family triumph will not represent a vindication of his father’s principles. Mitt Romney reached the summit not by battling the GOP’s staunchest conservatives but by accommodating them. Nothing better captures the absolute victory of the forces of Goldwaterism than a Romney triumph on the basis of Goldwater’s ideas,” writes Brookings’ E.J. Dionne. (Washington Post)

AEI’s Marc Thiessen on Mitt Romney’s play for Michigan: “It is no surprise that in the run-up to this week’s Republican National Convention, Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan made their first joint campaign appearance in the key battleground state of Ohio. More interesting is that Romney and Ryan took their pre-convention tour to a Midwestern state that went for Barack Obama by double digits in 2008: Michigan.” (Washington Post)

Heritage’s James Carafano: Wishful thinking is not a defense strategy. (Washington Examiner)

Third Way’s Bill Schneider: Why Todd Akin hurts Mitt Romney. (Politico)